My Highlights of 2022

Happy New Year! I meant to write this blog post on New Year’s Eve, but there was a lot going on over the holidays, including a trip to the theatre, so I’m writing it now! Today is actually Epiphany, so we’re still technically in the Christmas season ūüôā¬†

2022 was a better year than the pandemic years, and it was good to be out of the house and fairly ‘back to normal’, but it was still a bit strange with all the crazy politics, the death of the Queen and trying to get into some sort of hybrid work pattern, plus I got rid of my car. Here are my highlights of 2022:

Sadler’s Wells Gift Membership

I was given this amazing gift for my birthday, which gives me priority booking and 20% off tickets, so I made sure I went as often as I could! I saw some great ballets and other dance shows including:

Plus I saw Matthew Bourne’s¬†Sleeping Beauty¬†on New Year’s Eve, which was my first Matthew Bourne experience and I loved it!

Return To In-Person Tap Classes 

It was just so great to be back in the studio with other people, especially some of my old classmates! I include attending the tap intensive in this, because that was the first in-person class I attended after the pandemic and I learnt SO MUCH and surprised myself how I got back into things after being in the garage with a laptop for 2 years. But really good to be back to my weekly class.

Tina Turner the Musical 

A postponed birthday treat from 2021. I mean, it was just AMAZING!

Anything Goes

Once again, another FABULOUS SHOW with an excellent cast, including Simon Callow, Bonnie Langford and Kerry Ellis. It was a lovely Summer’s day at London’s Barbican.

Commonwealth Games

 

Athletics and diving – It was such a fantastic, positive atmosphere in Birmingham! Plus we stayed at a spa hotel outside of Birmingham (got an amazing deal!) and drove in to the designated park & ride car parks as the city hotels were stupidly expensive during the games.

Breaks in Devon and Kent

My SO had a week away in Devon in June, and then a colleague let us have her flat in the Thanet area of Kent for a week in September, so we took my mum with us. We were really fortunate to have great weather (most of the time) on these two weeks away – because you never know!¬† I wasn’t familiar with Kent, so it was nice to discover a new area.

Living Room Makeover

It hadn’t been changed since we moved in at the end of 2017 and I was sick of the blue walls, plus some of the paper was peeling and bubbling. In our second week off work in September, when we were back from Kent, we stripped wallpaper, filled holes, hung new paper, painted and rehung pictures where we wanted them (rather than where there were already holes)! There’s still an area to sort out in the corner behind the TV which requires replacing guttering outside, but WE LOVE IT NOW. The fireplace now stands out as a feature and I learnt how to do wallpapering properly.

Home Alone with Live Orchestra

In early December my SO and I went to see Home Alone with Live Orchestra at the Birmingham Symphony Hall as part of his birthday gift. It was also at the Royal Albert Hall in London something like a week before that, but it was pretty much sold out, standing room only, so we went for Birmingham…with a seat! There was even a choir onstage for the choral sections and they sang Christmas songs at the end. Those who left during the end-credits missed out! It’s my favourite Christmas film (I watch it every year) and it gave us all the Christmassy feels.

As you can see, I saw A LOT of shows last year, and I haven’t even mentioned all of them in this post. But you know I love the theatre, and when you go off-West End, the ticket prices are SO MUCH more reasonable.¬†

I usually write my goals for the year ahead, but I don’t think I managed to write anything last year – I was just glad to get out of 2021! This year I’m sharing a simple More & Less list:

More:

  • Quality sleep
  • Tap dance
  • Cardio exercise
  • Reading
  • Stretching
  • Writing

Less:

  • Trying to catch up
  • Things in the diary
  • Spending ¬£¬£

Let’s see how it goes! How about YOU?

Just What I Needed

Photo of the tube ride home with gym bag
Heading home from tap 

Guys, I have just returned from having a FULL BODY massage plus complimentary facial this afternoon and I FEEL GREAT. I’ve had a really annoying ache at the base of my neck and around the shoulder blades and upper spine area, likely from how I’m working at my home desk and the height of my laptop. Although I’m trying to do lots of stretching, movement and strength work, it hasn’t improved much, so I decided to get a massage. I used to get a massage every 2-3 months at a therapy clinic near my workplace, but the lady I was going to has ceased to operate from that central London location because she wasn’t getting enough customers with the way a lot of people’s work patterns have changed – I mean I’m only there 1-2 times a week now). I did a quick search on Google and managed to find two massage clinics near home – the first one I tried I got no answer when I phoned both numbers listed. The other one answered, so I went with them – plus they have fantastic reviews. I feel SO REFRESHED and I have to say my neck and shoulder blades are feeling a lot better already, and the surprise complimentary facial and scalp massage were an added bonus. As I told the therapist – IT WAS JUST WHAT I NEEDED!

Tap

Tap class is going really well. I had to miss the first two weeks of this 6-week block due to feeling under the weather and then the train/tube strikes, but I made sure to use the practise videos that are shared every week to catch up. The combination we’re learning is a little tricky at first, with loads of direction changes, so I made sure to go over and over and over it. We’re also working on a section of the BS Chorus and playing around with it, which is great, because I learnt it at the summer tap intensive! It’s November and my garage is now officially freezing, so I’ve not really been in there to use my floor recently. I’ve been staying in the warm and practising in socks on carpet! We’re dancing to I Like it Like That¬†by Pete Rodriguez – I can’t believe we only have 2 weeks left until we break for the holidays!

Sportin’ Life

Image of book 'Sportin Life: John W. Bubbles' by Brian Harker

Last week Tap Dance Research Network hosted a talk on Zoom entitled ‘Sportin’ Life’ on John W. Bubbles, aka the Father of Rhythm Tap, with author and jazz scholar Brian Harker (Brigham Young University, Utah), who has written a book all about him, and tap dancer and historian Jane Goldberg (Changing Times Tap Co), who actually knew John. It was a really interesting talk, hearing about his life and Vaudeville career as one half of ‘Buck & Bubbles’ and later as a solo act, and how he took tap dance and made the steps more complex, adding more heel drops, swing time and improvisation. He even had a come-back career in the 1960’s appearing on many tv shows, USO tours (with Bob Hope, Judy Garland, Barbra Streisand etc) and in the nightclubs (this was before nightclubs became sticky-floored meat markets!). Apparently he gave Fred Astaire a tap lesson, but Astaire never admitted this. It was kind of sad to hear how Bubbles had become slightly embittered by how he was treated as a black American, but I mean, who could blame him? It was another enlightening evening and Jane Goldberg even shared some footage, including some of her and John. Someone asked how many people on the call had Brian Harker’s book, and honestly, I hadn’t even heard of it until that night…so I ordered myself a copy the next day¬†and I’ve added it to my list of Must Reads! I’ve got so many books lined up, I’m actually overwhelmed.

Right, I must go – I’m going to a winter fayre in a local high street this evening, my hair’s still a mess from my scalp massage and I don’t want to miss the hot dogs!

October Happenings

Sorry – I’ve been M.I.A again! I guess I’ve been adjusting to a new life routine, now that I’m going into the office 1-2 times a week and I’m back at TAP CLASS every Thursday (apart from this week as we’re on a break).

On Tap

Tap class has been really great – I mean REALLY great. We’ve done lots of helpful exercises over the last few weeks, travelling across the floor, working in pairs and cementing some trickier combinations. We’ve been learning a routine throughout the 6 week course using Mick Jagger’s Strange Game.¬†I don’t think I’d ever heard the song before, but I like it! The routine allows us to play with the rhythms, switching between the downbeat and cross-phrasing. There are a couple of turns in the middle of the routine (exciting!), and we had the option of doing a turn-and-a-half (540 degrees so they tell me) and landing in the right direction on time(!!) or just doing a half-turn (180). I’m not great with fast turns and dizziness these days, so I stuck with the half. It was for the best!

In other news – my 14 year old niece has recently started tap dance lessons! I think these are tacked on straight after ballet and she’s doing the ISTD syllabus of course. I’ve given her one of my portable tap boards so she can practise at home, and I told her I’m happy to go over anything if she needs any help, because I think she’s finding it quite difficult having started later than the rest of the class. I’m going to make sure I don’t overwhelm her with information!

Mixtape: Celebrating 20 Years of Zoonation: The Kate Prince Company

A few weeks ago my SO and I, being big fans of ZOONATION, went to Sadlers Wells to see their latest offering Mixtape, a 20 year celebration of many of their shows, including the incredible Into the Hoods, Some Like it Hip Hop, Message in a Bottle¬†plus The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party, Tales of the Turntable¬†and¬†Groove on Down the Road.¬†The whole thing was just so uplifting – stunning live music and singers, fantastic hip hop choreography and dance. There was also a wonderful exhibition on one of the floors dedicated to former member Teneisha Bonner who died far too young in 2019 from breast cancer. I remember her as a real stand-out dancer in Into the Hoods when we saw it not once, but twice many moons ago. Wow, I forgot how much I loved that show and the banging soundtrack.¬† Mixtape was such a great night, didn’t want it to end and yes, the audience clapped on the off-beat!

Back to the Future The Musical

 

 

Last Thursday I met a former colleague after work and after a catch-up at Wahaca with Mexican street food, we went to see Back to the Future The Musical¬†at the Adelphi Theatre on the Strand. Now this was an interesting one. I absolutely LOVE the Back to the Future¬†films – they’re iconic and I can watch them again and again, particularly I and II. So I was interested to see how they’d adapted the first film for a West End musical.

In all honesty, I thought Doc Brown and George McFly were excellent, down to mannerisms, humour, dancing and everything. Marty McFly was pretty good. Not all, but a lot of the dialogue was verbatim, so if you know the film, you know what’s coming. They changed the reason why Marty had to go back in time to save the Doc. The set and especially the DeLorean was AMAZING – five stars! But I had this feeling all the way through that much of the supporting cast were fresh out of musical theatre school and a little inexperienced. I like the fact the show used the original theme music throughout and of course the iconic Huey Lewis & The News songs which popped up here and there, plus Chuck Berry’s Johnny B Goode at the school dance¬†but some of the singing grated in places, such as when the actress playing Marty’s girlfriend Jennifer sang The Power of Love –¬†it was a bit over the top musical theatre voice, if you know what I mean. I’d say good effort on the whole production, but something was missing for me and I don’t think everything can be successfully be made into a musical. Someone at my tap class who saw it last time around suggested it could perhaps have worked better as a play? Maybe. Still, it was a good night out.

Strictly 2022

Fleur Vito Jive Still
Fleur, Vito and Wig © BBC/Kieron McCarron

Strictly Come Dancing is back! I’m not really obsessed with it this year, but I’m still watching the main show, the results show and most of the It Takes Two shows on weekday evenings because it’s fun and positive. It’s really refreshing to not be on Twitter with all the moaners and psychos this year! It’s a great cast of ‘celebrities’ again this year…even if some don’t take to dance as well as others… Last Saturday night celebrated 100 years of the BBC and although the songs were JUST AWFUL for dancing (the Eastenders, Blue Peter¬† and Casualty theme tunes, anyone?!), I have to say I was in stitches watching Fleur & Vito’s jive to Abba’s Waterloo (celebrating Eurovision) –¬†I mean that WIG on Vito’s head took on a life of its own! HAHAHAA

Anyway, I hope you have a great weekend, and if you’re in the UK, don’t forget the clocks go back tomorrow night!

 

Back to Class!

On my way

Hey, sorry for the radio silence for the last 2 months! I’ve been away for a week on the Isle of Thanet in Kent, followed by a week of painting and wallpapering the living room. And then last Thursday I returned to my weekly tap class IN THE STUDIO!

My workplace has asked that we work from the office 40% of the month, so I’ve chosen Thursday as my main day in…so I can attend tap class in the afternoon. I have to say I was feeling a little nervous going back to the class, having not been there in person since MARCH 2020, but at the same time I was really excited!

Well, I arrived at the college (which has a snazzy new entrance) and asked which studio the class would be in – same one in the basement as usual! Some of my old classmates were sat in the waiting area outside the studio, so I caught up with them, and then some others arrived – including a couple of ladies who I’d never actually met in person but they recognised me from being on-screen in the garage! When the class before ours was done and exiting the studio, us intermediates went in and J and A, who were at the summer tap intensive in July were there already as they’re doing both levels. It was nice to be back there with people I know, and of course it was great to say hello to our teacher in person, after a couple of years on camera!

This half-term we’re dancing to Strange Game by Mick Jagger. I didn’t get any practise in over the weekend, so I ended up running through it about ten times the night before this week’s class. This week we did a few exercises in pairs, including working on spring-shuffles, which we do every week in our warm-up sequence, but a lot of us are either missing the floor a lot and/or not hitting the timing. I did work on this quite a bit in the last year at home, so it went better for me than it used to, but I still missed the floor quite a bit, and then when it came to doing 3x spring-shuffles on a single side…it all went horribly wrong. Oh, and someone fell over – not me, thankfully! I have to say, the new studio floor is VERY slippery…

It’s interesting doing these exercises in the studio again because it’s quite hard to hear yourself when we’re dancing all together. Due to this fact, our teacher had us run through the routine in 2 smaller groups so that she could hear us properly. I think there’s about 12-15 of us in the class – a bit bigger than the Thursday afternoon class was in 2019/20. Now, I had to do a bit of self-talk and tell myself not to think about the people standing there watching! It worked – I didn’t go wrong ūüôā It was much easier to hear the timings of the two groups, and my own steps of course.

After the class last week, I went back to work, showered and then carried on working for another hour, but this week I decided to just head back to work to check if any emails had come in and then headed home straight away to beat the crowds. Then I logged on from home and did another hour or so. I think that will work better for me going forward.

It’s SO good to be back. When I took a break from classes in May, I was feeling quite jaded, probably from being online for so long and not being in a physical class with proper feedback, but now I’m back, I’m absolutely LOVING IT!

 

Tap Intensive 2022

At the end of July I¬† was excited to attend the Improvers/Intermediate tap dance intensive at CityLit in London’s Covent Garden. I was only able to attend 2 of the 3 days because I didn’t have enough spare leave as I had 3 days booked the following week for the Commonwealth Games!

I’ve been to this tap intensive twice before, but on those previous occasions I burned myself out and I don’t think I had my hydration and nutrition quite right, because as I mentioned before, I felt hung over the following day! This time I made sure I drank enough water throughout, was fuelled and hydrated beforehand, had jellybeans I could pop during the class for extra quick energy, and then I had an electrolyte powder to add to my water for the journey home. IT WORKED!

I think what especially helped was that I’m now mainly working from home, so I was starting from a place of rest rather than the cumulative daily commute exhaustion of the past. Arriving on day 1, I was really pleased to see A and J from my pre-pandemic tap classes in Lambeth! It was so nice to be in a studio and dance with other people again after 2+ years!

Over the two days I was there we learnt the BS Chorus and worked on some other routines, timesteps and exercises, including travelling corner-to-corner across the studio. I particularly enjoyed being pushed to do some more advanced stuff and add in those extra sounds, and also to get lots of helpful feedback. It was great after having been dancing at home in the garage with limited feedback – it’s just not the same doing classes online! It was a really fun couple of days and we filmed the routines and exercises at the end of each day to take away for practise. On my last day (day 2) I realised I had been trying to film using my phone on camera mode instead of video (I mean, REALLY!) and then I wasn’t there on the final day, so J was kind enough to send me her video. It was great to learn some new things – like the BS Chorus and what a Maxi Ford is! I’m still not great on wings as I’ve not spent much time on them in classes…but I know what I need to do!

When I got home I put my feet in the air with yoga toe-spreaders for ten minutes, then plunged them into a bowl of water with Epsom salts. The next day while working at my home desk, I had my feet on the heated foot massager, which did the job!

By the way, the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham were AMAZING! Such a positive, exciting atmosphere! We saw Athletics (100m T11/12, 400m, 800m heats and Heptathlon Long Jump – including Katarina Johnson-Thompson) and then we saw Jack Laugher (1m springboard) and Andrea Spendolini-Siriex (10m platform) win GOLD for England in Diving! I mean, these people are so inspiring – the WORK they must have put in. The diving was my favourite part, I guess because I’ve seen a lot of athletics before, and the atmosphere was amazing – everyone in the audience holding their breath as the diver got up into a perfect armstand at the edge of the 10 metre platform…before they threw themselves off into various twists and somersaults, finally hitting the water like a fish. WOW

Did you see any of the games? I didn’t see much of the gymnastics on TV, so I’ll catch up on BBC iPlayer.

I think those two days of intensive tap really geared me up for returning to in-studio classes from September – I think I just need to decide if I’ll return to my usual class or try somewhere else for a change…it would be great to see everyone again after all this time. In the meantime – more practise and Pilates!

Review: Burn the Floor – The Reunion

I know. I’ve been at the theatre a lot lately. All the way back in December when Strictly Come Dancing was heating up towards a dramatic final, tickets were going on sale for the spin-off touring shows, such as the Live Tour and the Professionals Tour . I couldn’t make the Professionals Tour dates, but instead I jumped in and bought tickets for Burn the Floor – The Reunion: A Celebration of 25 Years at the Symphony Hall in Birmingham.

Well, last Friday night was the night! My SO and I drove up the M40 to Birmingham on Friday morning and as the show was in the evening, we stayed over until Saturday. We parked up at the Mailbox and wandered into the centre to get something to eat. WELL, as we were walking along the road, we were approaching a zebra crossing when we suddenly saw a couple riding a tandem bike towards us. How lovely, you say! Yeah, except they were STARK NAKED. IN THE MIDDLE OF BIRMINGHAM FOR CRYING OUT LOOOUUUD.

The middle of Birmingham

Later on (when I was enjoying noodles, egg-fried rice, spicy pork and salt-&-pepper chicken) and had processed what HECK I had witnessed, I wondered if they had been protesting something. When I told my mum about it on the Saturday evening, she asked me if they had a banner. I told her I don’t know –¬† I didn’t want to look again to find out…HA-HA!

And….now onto the show!

Birmingham Symphony Hall

The show kicked off at 7.30pm and the auditorium was pretty much full, apart from the row in front of us (as usually happens, that row suddenly populated after the interval). The award-winning Broadway show Burn the Floor is the show from which most of the Strictly pros are scouted. The Reunion¬†starred our favourite former and current pros: Robin Windsor, Aliaz Skorjanec, Janette Manrara, Trent Whiddon, Karen Hauer, Kai Widdrington, Dianne Buswell, Luba Mushtuk and sibs Kevin and Joanne Clifton, as well as other BTF dancers I hadn’t necessary heard of, but some of whom have been Strictly/Dancing with the Stars pros in other countries.

I don’t know what I was expecting, but the show was a much bigger production than I imagined! At the beginning, director and choreographer Jason Gilkison came out to introduce the show and talk about its beginnings and evolution. We gave a huge round of applause, and it was quite emotional for him and the dancers as it was the final time they would probably all perform together. Then the lights lowered and it began. These amazing dancers took us through a variety of incredible ballroom, Latin, contemporary and jazz routines to a fantastic set of songs, led by incredible singers Rietta Austin and Patrick Smyth, with plenty of light and shade. There was Charleston, cha-cha, samba, paso doble, rumba, waltz and bit of Fosse I believe. The colourful lighting effects were exciting and atmospheric, and the whole thing was really quite “wow” in that size of auditorium. We sat in the Grand Tier but if you were lucky enough to be in the stalls, the dancers performed and strutted in the aisles around you on several occasions.

I have to say that although everyone was fantastic, my stand-outs of the show were Karen and Janette – just fabulous and so much precision. Towards the finale the show blew up with an explosive jive to Tina Turner’s ‘Proud Mary’, which I LOVED of course!!

You know that big wheel keep on turning
Proud Mary keep on burning
And we’re rolling, rolling
Rolling on the river

And just when you thought it was over, they came back out to a really apt musical number – ‘Ballroom Blitz’! As you can imagine the applause went on for AGES! At the end the show’s creators came onto the stage at the end to a round of applause and the dancers were all hugging each other and some had their phones out filming the audience and capturing the electric atmosphere. The whole thing was so uplifting!

Verdict: An exciting, energetic, exuberant Strictly Spectacular! 

June-July Favourites

A Week in Devon

 

My SO and I had a much needed week away in South Devon at the end of June. Although rain was forecast for the ENTIRE WEEK, we had sunshine all week, apart from one evening and one overnight downpour! We got to enjoy lots of seafood, beautiful gardens, a couple of short boat trips, and we even had a cheeky trip to the theatre on the evening it rained to see Agatha Christie’s The Unexpected Guest!¬†To be honest, I could have just stayed in Devon and had our belongings shipped down, but I missed my cat too much!

Anything Goes

 

Last Saturday afternoon, my SO and I went to the Barbican Centre in the City of London to see the fabulous Tony Award winning musical Anything Goes!

The current London run is starring big name actors Bonnie Langford (Cats, 42nd Street, Eastenders), Simon Callow (Four Weddings and a Funeral, Shakespeare in Love), and Denis Lawson (Bleak House, Star Wars, New Tricks), along with award-winning West End star Kerry Ellis (Cats, Wicked, We Will Rock You).

With a fantastic Cole Porter score of many songs you’ve probably heard of, including ‘It’s De-lovely’, ‘I get a Kick out of You’, ‘You’re the Top’ aaaand ‘Anything Goes’ of course, the ocean liner-based farce was absolutely hilarious. The dance numbers were great and even included tap dancing sailors! It was just such an engaging, uplifting and fun afternoon at the theatre.

Dance & Fitness

Sleek Ballet

I’m currently taking a break from weekly tap classes, which is giving me a bit of space to work through some of my video collection on timesteps, technique and classic repertoire – I managed to get down to the garage last Thursday evening, but now we’re in the middle of a heatwave (they’re saying it’s going to be 40 degrees Celsius on Monday – not fun jumping up and down in a stuffy garage!) so I’ve not done much so far. However, I will be attending 2 days of a 3-day tap dance intensive in Covent Garden later this month – I’ve been twice before and I always come away having learnt LOADS. I just need to pace myself, because on the previous occasions I went I felt BATTERED the next day. (Better hydration? More snacks? More breaks? Electrolytes?)

I wasn’t going to continue with the Sleek Ballet membership after the trial, but they enticed me back with a discount, so I cancelled my Rambert Home Studio membership for now and I’m giving it a go! (If you look right now, they’re offering 50% off your first year with code Summer50). So far I’ve done a couple of Lower Body Barre videos and No Jump Cardio – I’m definitely feeling the burn! I also try to continue doing the BOP Jazz workouts after work and I do a daily series of stretches most evenings. I now have access to a really good collection of exercise videos – I just need to get into some sort of routine.

Keep dancing, hydrating and working out!

 

 

 

Review: The Crucible

Seeing as I have this gift membership for Sadler’s Wells theatre, on Tuesday evening after work I went to see Scottish Ballet perform their adaptation of Arthur Miller’s play The Crucible.

The play is inspired by the Salem witch trials of 1692, but was also written as an allegory for the post-war witch-hunt of those with alleged communist ties in Hollywood, leading to many in the industry being blacklisted in the 1940s-50s. Some people were even imprisoned for refusing to testify. Arthur Miller himself was convicted of ‘contempt of congress’ for refusing to identify others who had been at meetings he’d attended…

In a devout Puritan village in Massachusetts, teenager Abigail works for John & Elizabeth Proctor, but ends up having an affair with John, discovered by Elizabeth, and she is fired. Abigail and her friends head into the forest, having followed Tituba, the slave of Revd Parris, and she tries to put a curse on Elizabeth Proctor. Frenzied dancing ensues until Revd Parris discovers them and finds his daughter Betty has collapsed. Betty is carried back to the house and Revd Hale, an expert in witchcraft is summoned to investigate. In the process of trying to exorcise the bewitched Betty, a dark force is unleashed and the group of girls begin to accuse lots people in the village of witchcraft. Tituba is framed for witchcraft and jailed. Abigail is the niece of Revd Parris, so her accusations hold sway in the proceedings that follow. The villagers become suspicious of each other and accusations fly, leading to many court hearings. Abigail plants a poppet (mini-doll stuck with a pin) of herself in the Proctor’s home to frame Elizabeth. The authorities search the house and discover this ‘evidence’ of Elizabeth’s witchcraft. Eventually, the affair between John and Abigail is made public, but Elizabeth’s continued denial of the affair leads to her own condemnation. John is also accused of witchcraft and sentenced.

I’ve never seen Scottish Ballet before, so I was very excited to watch a different ballet company on stage. I’ve also never read The Crucible – the only Arthur Miller play I’ve read is¬†A View from the Bridge when I was at school. As you can tell from the storyline and subject matter, the show was quite dark, with a constant sense of menace hanging in the air. With choreography by Helen Pickett, the dancers were fantastic – the dancer playing the role of Abigail performed some very effective jerky, off-kilter movements, visually representing her mental and emotional state. Unusually for a ballet, there was laughter and also screaming from the dancers at various points, which made it even more disconcerting.

I wouldn’t say this was my favourite ballet as it was so dark, but it was very well done and the story kept me gripped until the end.

Time to Tap Tapathon 2022

On Sunday afternoon I once again took part in the annual Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation ‘Time to Tap’ virtual Tapathon!

Unfortunately I didn’t really put the time in to learn the routine because I had so many other things going on, so I ended up learning the beginner’s routine as best I could and then I watched the intermediate version and added some of those steps in. To be honest, I wasn’t even sure I was going to be able to take part on the day. However, I spent part of Saturday and the hour before the event working on it and managed to pull something out of the bag!

The event was led by TV presenter Naomi Wilkinson (Countryfile, Milkshake), who choreographed the routines and got everyone energised and pumped up on the day. There were over 100 screens tuned in on Zoom, and it was loads of fun. We performed the routine three times Рbeginners, intermediate and then all together! I danced all three times (muddling through the intermediate performance LOL). It was so great to take part from my garden on a sunny Sunday afternoon and to see so many tap dancers from all over the UK! 

Afterwards I was absolutely shattered, so I’ve spent a lot of time stretching and rolling out my muscles.

And today…I’ve just gone and signed up for another 5k run for the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation – Roy’s Regal Run, marking the Queen’s Jubilee! Eeek!